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If you’re an immigrant to the U.S. and are in business, or are planning on going into business, I’m going to give you some politically incorrect advice. I’m going to tell you what many of you do that annoys Americans and causes them to not want to deal with you.
• Interpersonal skills: Americans believe that a firm handshake and looking them in the eye indicate integrity and honesty. Do this. Smile too as it is taken as an indicator of friendliness and likability; people like to hand money over to people that they like and who they think like them.
• Learn English: This is a major issue. If you are reading this, obviously you can read the language. But you need to learn to use it conversationally. Not being able to use and understand English is a taken as a sign of stupidity and laziness, the false stereotype that many Americans have of Latin Americans in particular. Most community colleges have English as second language courses that are almost free. Take classes, watch television in English, and use the language every day. It’s not that difficult and within a short period of time you will be fluent.
About 50% of the people that I sell businesses to are immigrants from all over the world. They are great hardworking people; most of them understand what I have discussed in this article, but some do not. Do not let this type of nonsense get in the way of your business success.
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